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John Gano (1727-1804)

He was of Huguenot extraction, his great-grandfather, Francis Gevneaux, having escaped from the Island of Guernsey during the persecution of the Protestants and settled at New Rochelle, New York His education was irregular and limited. He was ordained, 29 May, 1754, as pastor of the Scotch Plains, New Jersey, Baptist Church, and shortly afterward traveled and preached extensively in the southern colonies, and was settled as pastor for two years in North Carolina. In 1760 he returned to New Jersey, and also preached for a while in Philadelphia and New York. When, in 1762, the 1st Baptist Church in New York was organized, he became its pastor and continued successfully in this relation for twenty-six years. Mr. Gano was an ardent patriot, and in the war of the Revolution served for some time as chaplain to General Clinton's New York brigade. In the conflict on Chatterton Hill he was continually under fire, displaying a cool and quiet courage, which commanded the admiration of officers and men. Returning to New York at the close of the war he found his Church scattered and greatly reduced, but prosperity soon returned. In May, 1788, he removed to Kentucky, and became pastor of the Town Pork Church, near Lexington, where he remained till his death. He was twice married; his first wife was the sister of the wife of Dr. Manning, first president of Brown University. It has been said of him that, "as a minister of Christ, he shone like a star of the first magnitude in the American Churches."--His son, Stephen, clergyman, born in New York City, 25 December 1762; died in Providence, Rhode Island, 18 August, 1828, was prevented by the Revolutionary war from receiving a collegiate education, and pursued a short course of study with reference to the medical profession. He was appointed a surgeon in the army at the age of nineteen, and for two years was in the public service. While practicing as a physician at Tappan, now Orangetown, New York, he was converted, and, at once feeling it his duty to give himself to the Christian ministry, was ordained 2 August, 1786. After preaching for a time in the vicinity of New York he was called, in 1792, to the pastorate of the 1st Baptist Church in Providence, Rhode Island He accepted the call and spent the remainder of his days in ministering, with distinction and success, to this, the oldest Baptist Church in the United States. He was one of the overseers of Brown University from 1794 till his death.

 
 
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